The dreadful Columbus Blue Jackets start to the regular season got even worse.
The New York Islanders beat the Blue Jackets 4-0 at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday night to drop Columbus to 0-7-0. The Blue Jackets are the first team since the 1997-98 Chicago Blackhawks to start the year with such a low marker. That Blackhawks team finished 30-39-13 with 73 points.
“We’re not going to go from zero to 60 overnight,” Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson said. “We didn’t expect anything less than a win, but it’s going to be a process getting back to where we want to be. Unfortunately, it’s not going to happen for us overnight.”
The Blue Jackets got behind first off an Islanders goal by Nikolay Kulemin at the 18:58 mark of the first period.
Columbus had their chances out-shooting the Islanders 37-29, but it wasn’t enough. Making this even more disheartening for Columbus was their inability to convert on three straight third period power plays.
Casey Cizikas and Brock Nelson both went off for delay of-game penalties. Nelson also was given a minor for hooking shortly after.
Curtis McElhinney stopped 25 of 28 Islanders shots on goal. McElhinney was in for Sergei Bobrovsky who recently admitted his confidence was shot.
Earlier in the day it was reported by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman that Columbus general manager Jarmo Kekalainen was looking to make a trade before firing coach Todd Richards.
Said forward Brandon Dubinsky on Richards again according to the Columbus Dispatch:
“It’s not just him,” Dubinsky said. “There’s 23 guys in here. He’s working his (butt) off. He’s trying to change things, make us a better team.For the majority of seven games we haven’t gone out and executed. It’s unfair on our part to play in front of him that way. He cares a lot about winning. He cares deeply about this organization, the city, the fans, the team, the players … I feel like we’re letting him down, and it’s unfortunate. It’s a really (crappy) feeling.”
Clearly there are no easy answers for the Blue Jackets, a preseason under-the-radar Stanley Cup pick, between personnel or coaching. The Blue Jackets have been outscored 34-13 by their opponents.
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